Spotify’s Commemoration for 2017

Who doesn’t love unwrapping presents? Well, this season, we were excited to unwrap Spotify’s gift of reflection through their “2017 wrapped” feature. With the click of a button, this music streaming service can show you how many songs, artists, and genres you listened to this past year in addition to how many minutes of music streamed through your headphones. Spotify also provides questions for you to make music listening goals for 2018. After showing your statistics, the interactive webpage quizzes you on your own musical taste. For example, Spotify asks, “which was the top artist?” after flashing a group of album images on screen to choose from. They categorize your most-listened-to songs of the year into a generated playlist of 100 songs and they provide you with a playlist of “the ones that got away,” so that you can catch up on songs that you may have missed in 2017. Bands and artists are also able to view how many times their songs/albums were played by Spotify users. The one catch of this annual feature is that, as always, Spotify promotes paying for Premium services or encourage anyone with Premium to stick with it (since the “wrap up” also tells you how many times you skipped a song and why Premium would be a good fit).

“2017 wrapped” replaced last year’s “My Year in Music” which showcased different statistics such as top albums globally and top artists by season. While some internet commenters have expressed a longing for “My Year In Music,” the statistics this year are much more personal and Spotify went even further to be politically relevant with their corresponding advertisement campaign. Decorated in red, pink, and green, these ad posters poke fun at certain songs, streamers, musical artists, and trending events. The ads are designed simply so that the focus is not on the color scheme, but rather, on the playful copy. One ad in a Chicago red line station displays, “Have fewer issues than the person who streamed ‘Issues’ over 3,152 times this year.’” Another one says, “Deliver burns as well as the person who streamed ‘Bad Liar’ 86 times the day Sean Spicer resigned.” Yeah, they went there and we loved it.

AdWeek recently interviewed CMO Seth Farbman about the politically and comically-charged campaign. When asked about what their strategy was for these ads, Farbman stated that it’s impossible to not constantly think about the current state of affairs, especially when thinking of marketing campaigns. Farbman said, “We rely on two things. One is a tone of voice that is sort of inclusive and reflective and a little cheeky. And we also rely on the information and the data that we see from our fans. All of the work we present, they’re not statements we’re making. It’s just looking at how people consumed music over the course of the year and using that fact-based approach, which somehow makes it feel a bit less traumatic.” Pairing their musical data collection to what’s happening in the news is how billboards, like the Spicer example, were successfully put together. Farbman and his team thought about songs that could coordinate to current events and then wrote out their taglines.

What are your opinions on “2017 wrapped?” Comment below.

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